Yesterday, we received some good news/bad news when it came to Ryan McDonagh’s shoulder injury.
We learned that surgery is likely out because he didn’t suffer any structural damage, nor was it separation or dislocation. However, Larry Brooks at the New York Post did term the Ranger defenseman’s status as out indefinitely and questioned whether he’d be available for the start of the playoffs.
Well, it looks like Uncle Larry was a little premature in his diagnosis as a Rangers spokesman tells Steve Zipay at Newsday that “it would be inaccurate to write that he would be out indefinitely.”
With the Rangers virtually assured a playoff spot, Pat Leonard at the Daily News notes that the Rangers are likely to be very cautious with McDonagh’s return, so there’s still a chance he may not return until the playoffs.
Obviously, McDonagh isn’t expected to play in Colorado tonight.
John Moore, who is returning from a concussion, will likely take McDonagh’s place on defense.
Brooks anticipates that Marc Staal will be re-united with Dan Girardi, while Moore will be paired with Anton Stralman.
…so, basically it looks like the injury will prevent McDonagh from playing in a week’s worth of games, but depending on the Rangers playoffs situation the team could give him some additional recovery time. Seems like the smart way to play it. No reason to bring him back early unless it’s absolutely necessary. I’m not even sure holding on to home ice advantage in the first round would be worth re-inserting McDonagh if he’s not 100% ready.
…while all the news coming out on McDonagh is positive, I’m still concerned that the Rangers medical staff is still going to find a way to screw it up.
…btw, how nice is it to replace a top two defenseman with another top two defenseman on the first pair? And more than that, how huge do the Klein and Diaz trades look now? Could you imagine if the injury forced the Rangers to go with Del Zotto on the second pairing? Yikes. I think I’d actually be worried about the Rangers qualifying for the postseason despite them currently having a 99.98% chance of clinching. This folks, is why defensive depth is so essential in the NHL.